I hate the feeling of fear and panic. Sometimes for me, it is all too familiar when I look at my calendar, practically void of any booked jobs or gigs. Suddenly, in a matter of seconds, it triggers feelings of failure, unproductiveness, and even foolishness for moving here in the first place. I think, shouldn’t I be farther along by now? And what if I’m still in the same place in a year?
I thought about the encouragement people give when someone is trying to reach a goal. In the Army, learning to run can be challenging for some. We would tell the struggling runner that it doesn’t matter how slow they run, just as long as they keep running. I thought about when I am playing a song at a venue and I miss a note, or forget a lyric or chord. I never stop in the middle of a performance, I just keep playing…something. I thought about when I tried to teach Eddie how to dance and he missed a step, or became so wrapped up in counting that he lost the rhythm. I told him, “Just keep dancing.” I thought about the sad-looking tree in front of my apartment. All through winter I would have sworn it was dead, but it always swayed and moved in the wind. Now tiny green buds are beginning to bloom on its’ once bare branches. And while other trees have twice the leaves of my sad little tree, it does have some leaves now.
I had a comforting thought the other day. It’s actually something I heard Tyler Perry, of all people, talk about while I was randomly flipping through channels. He spoke of the struggle through his unsuccessful years and when asked, “How did you come so far,” he shrugged and replied, “I just kept going.” I suppose in the end it doesn’t matter how quickly you rise to success or meet your goal. It’s not about the size of steps you take, just that you take them. Becoming the person you want to be doesn't always happen quickly. Because in the end, all it takes to move forward…is movement.